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X Men: First Class Movie Review

Hollywood has found a way to re-use popular characters: Origin stories.  Starting with Spiderman, then Batman Begins, Thor, The Green Lantern, next year’s Superman: The Man of Steel and coming to a theater near you in July, Captain America: The First Avenger.

Now is as good a time as ever to tip the cap to Marvel Mastermind, Stan Lee.  His imagination was a stunning 1/2 century ahead of the world.  These comic book characters were created back in the 1960′s.  It has to be rewarding that his passion for larger than life, yet flawed mutant characters would get their due from top filmmakers in 2011.

The swingin’ 60′s is the perfect era to have Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) meet his telepathic brethren, Erik Lehnsherr. (Michael Fassbender) These two talented actors anchor the film in reality.  Their emotional impact makes all the mutations, skirmishes & special effects much more believable.

X Men: First Class is set against the backdrop of the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962.   What an amazing fragile  time in the world’s history: The Cold War. Kudos to Bryan Singer & Sheldon Turner for writing a story which integrates Charles & Erik teaming up with the ever steady leadership of  John F. Kennedy, to save the world from Nuclear War. (That’s in the movie trailer) NO SPOILERS HERE.

Now, let’s get to the heavy.  Kevin Bacon plays Sebastian Shaw.  All I know about Kevin Bacon is this:  He’s so amazingly on-point with every role he inhabits, and the thing is, he makes it look completely effortless.   January Jones does a fine job as Emma Frost.  Rose Byrne’s having an amazing year playing CIA agent Moira MacTaggert.  This spring, Rose starred in Writer/Director James Wan’s uber clever horror flick, “Insidious,” & she also gave us the best laughs of the summer as one of the “Bridesmaids.”  (Bridesmaids was way funnier than “The Hangover 2. Yeah, I said it!) She’s going to X-plode in popularity.

X Men: First Class gives the audience a clearer understanding. Questions will be answered.  How did they band together? Why did Erik & Charles venture on separate paths?  Why is Charles confined to a wheelchair?  Who actually created Magneto’s helmet?  I applaud the filmmakers for releasing X Men: First Class in 2D.  It’s fine. Looks great. No Gimmicks.  I’d rather have story, story & more story than 3D.  X Men Marks the Spot!  Don’t miss it!

Fact: The Film Freak iPhone/iPad App is used by the entire X Team.  I’m told Professor X never misses a Film Freak Movie Talk Show Podcast. I also hear, Emma Frost just digs my Tweets!  Search: Film Freak

If you don’t have the luxury of Cerebro, you can simply follow me on Twitter @leoquinones